Red Sox left fielder Carl Crawford is right on track in his recovery from a badly strained left hamstring.
According to Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe, Crawford is scheduled to begin a minor league rehab assignment Friday evening with Triple-A Pawtucket. If all goes well, he will only be required to play in two rehab games before returning to the Red Sox starting lineup Monday in Baltimore.
Crawford, 29, was batting .243/.275/.384 with six home runs, eight stolen bases and 31 RBI in 277 plate appearances before straining his hamstring in mid-June. He signed a seven-year, $142 million free agent contract with the Red Sox this past December.
Update (12:58 AM ET): Per Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle, Samardzija has been diagnosed with a strained pectoral muscle. He’ll be shut down for a week. That’s good news for the Giants, considering the alternatives.
Giants starter Jeff Samardzija will undergo an MRI on his ailing right shoulder, according to NBC Sports Bay Area. The right-hander struggled in a minor league game on Wednesday, surrendering a pair of home runs and hitting a batter. Overall this spring, Samardzija has given up 15 runs (13 earned) on 17 hits (six homers) and seven walks with seven strikeouts in 11 innings.
This may mean Samardzija won’t be ready for the start of the regular season. Derek Holland would likely replace Samardzija in the rotation. Holland had been competing for the No. 5 spot in the Giants’ rotation.
Samardzija led the National League in losses last season with 15, also posting a 4.42 ERA with a 205/32 K/BB ratio in a league-high 207 2/3 innings. Since becoming a starter, Samardzija has been able to avoid injury, making 32 or 33 starts in each of the last five seasons.